Hedge To Be Placed On Donovan Prison Grounds

The State Department of Mental Health Thursday recommended placing sexually violent predator Matthew Hedge at a location adjacent to Donovan State Prison in Otay Mesa.

The recommendation comes two days after officials withdrew their original proposal to place Hedge at a home in Ramona.

Ramona residents protested Hedge being placed in their community, and the owner of the property subsequently tore up the agreement he signed with the state agency.

Hedge, 45, pleaded guilty in 1989 to molesting two boys and two girls in the San Diego area and served prison time before entering a treatment program at Coalinga State Hospital.

After completing the multi-phase treatment program in November 2005, he was allowed to live in a trailer outside the walls of Donovan State Prison in Otay Mesa. But he was returned to Coalinga in January 2006, after state officials monitoring his movements said he talked with two girls at a treatment center, lied to staff and had a deviant sexual fantasy about a child.

Last October, Judge Michael Wellington ruled that Hedge should be released back into San Diego County on an outpatient basis.

The judge will hold a public hearing on April 13 to consider the proposed placement of Hedge at the Donovan site.

The public may lodge comments until March 27 about the placement recommendation via e-mail, sdsafe@doj.ca.gov; telephone, (858) 495-3639; or mail. The address is SVP Release/SAFE Task Force, 9425 Chesapeake Drive, San Diego, CA, 92123.